Vanuatu

Labour go into overdrive to make Helen Clark look better

[Labour MP Sua Mr William] Sio has just returned from a trip to [Kiribati and Tuvalu] to look at the impact of rising sea levels.

He says the main impact is the concentration of population putting pressure on scarce resources like drinking water which is in turn being affected by the rising sea water table.

Currently New Zealand has an immigration quota of 75 for Tuvalu and Kiribati.

“On Tuvalu there’s a total population of 12,000 and 6000 of them live on Funafuti (the main island) and there’s just not enough room,” he said.

“The Prime Minister (of Tuvalu) said to me, the numbers are small but they can have a really striking impact.”

He is proposing what he calls a programme of ”Migration with Dignity” which could see New Zealand assist with education and pre-immigration training in the islands for people without the skills and qualifications to easily qualify for immigration.

“They don’t want to lose all their brightest and smartest,” he said.

“They still need them to run the Government.

“So the Government Ministers I met agreed that we need to grow the education skill base and look at the mobility of labour.”

He said that both governments of Kiribati and Tuvalu regard migration as a last resort.

“Notwithstanding that I think that for a future Government which wants to stand and support the Pacific you have to plan for that emergency and that disaster but hoping that the disaster doesn’t happen and allow for the gradual movement of people.”

He said he was surprised because had expected that the Governments would be saying everybody wanted to leave.

“But they actually didn’t.

“Yes, they want to migrate but they also want to be able to come back to their homes.

“They want their homes protected.”

But on the bigger picture of the impact climate change is having on the sea levels he said that if New Zealand wanted to stand with the Pacific it had to walk the talk and be bigger and braver about reducing its carbon emissions.

Mr Sio’s trip is an interesting move by Labour which has been accused of taking the Pacific vote for granted.

Looks like another Helen Clark inspired move to make NZ look palatable to the UN.  Because here’s another view, which won’t be popular with those holding the begging bowls.  Read more »

Whaleoil Ground Crew report from Vanuatu after cyclone Pam

Guest article.

My wife and I have just returned from a week in Vanuatu …

I never want to see another washed-up ‘churnalist’ write about Poverty in New Zealand.

Flying into Bauerfield airport in Port Vila, it was immediately noticeable how many shacks and buildings had been severely hammered during cyclone Pam. Trees could be seen snapped in half with debris scattered everywhere. We were met by the familiar ‘wall’ of heat & humidity at the door of the plane, despite all of the apparent destruction, it was reassuring to know some things don’t change I thought. Walking across the apron to the terminal building I was amazed at tower lights that were twisted & snapped off, they were just pushed out of the way for now. The terminal had windows boarded up and guttering missing.

Once through the usual process of border control & customs checks … ‘Island Style’… we found our transport to our booked accommodation, and thankfully again found comfort in an air-conditioned bus. On setting off, I could not believe a Billboard, (same style as we see in any big town here in NZ) bent over almost horizontal, apparently there are un-official reports that the wind got up to 425kph. The roads are stuffed, giant potholes everywhere, I am sure some of them could have accommodated a Toyota Prius or two, they were honestly that big. Vehicles in Vanuatu drive on the right hand side of the road although due to the state of the roads you would never know, drivers weave all over the road attempting to find passage past the worst of the canyons. Read more »

Tagged:

Another Goff stuff up, NH90s not fit for purpose

Phil Goff signing away nearly $800 million on rubbish helicopters

Phil Goff signing away nearly $800 million on rubbish helicopters

The NZ Herald editorial explores yet another legacy of the idiot Phil Goff from when he was Defence Minister.

Nine years ago, the decision to buy eight NH90 helicopters for the air force was accompanied by considerable fanfare. The French-made multi-purpose choppers would, said the Defence Minister, Phil Goff, be bigger, faster, more versatile and have a far greater lift capability than the ageing Iroquois they were replacing. Such acclaim was only to be expected given that they represented the biggest single defence purchase since the navy’s two Anzac frigates in the 1980s. The NH90s cost $771 million, a sum which demanded everything should be done to ensure they met Defence Force requirements for military deployment and disaster relief.

Clearly, this was not done to an acceptable standard. Cyclone-hit Vanuatu has proved as much. None of the NH90s have been taken up there because they are considered too difficult to transport and are not yet cleared for “island-hopping”. In addition, the air force is concerned about how the helicopters would cope with “wind-wash” in the islands. So much for Mr Goff’s assurance that the multi-role ship Canterbury, now in Vanuatu, had the capacity to carry up to four NH90s, along with a Seasprite helicopter, light armoured vehicles and 250 soldiers.

Read more »

Accuracy from the Herald…surely you jest?

Yesterday the esteemed NZ Herald told us:

Meanwhile, the New Zealand Defence Force is also prepping the HMNZS Canterbury for departure tomorrow.

The ship will be packed with aid, equipment and more than 100 Defence Force engineers when it sets sail from Devonport naval base tomorrow morning.

Righto…so I should be able to watch as it sails up the harbour this morning right?

Wrong.

3News managed to get it right…on Sunday.

HMNZS Canterbury is expected to leave from Devonport Naval Base today with equipment for the reconstruction, including two helicopters.

It will carry up to 250 people to help onshore as well as 126 crew and will take three to four days to reach the island nation.

Read more »

6 Kiwis unaccounted for in Vanuatu

The government is in the dark over six New Zealanders who could be missing in Vanuatu following Cyclone Pam.

Asked what’s being done to try and reach the six missing Kiwis, [Civil Defence Minister Nikki Kaye] replied, “I know the MFAT staff are working around the clock, firstly to ensure those people that have contacted MFAT or other families are absolutely in the loop. But secondly that communications infrastructure is up and running.

We’ve got a Hercules going over later today to look at those further assessments. But the best thing that New Zealanders can do is one; look on www.safetravel.govt.nz two; send short text messages, because those are likely to get through to loved ones.” Read more »

How to raise more than $100M for Vanuatu in three easy steps #cyclonepam

Ok so I’ve come up with a few ideas to help Vanuatu.

We can easily find more than $100 million in by just doing three easy things.

1. Stop the Flag Referendum – $25 million

2. Don’t upgrade Northland bridges – $32 million – $69 million

3. Tell Team NZ the party is over – $35 million   Read more »

Tagged:

Should we fund Team New Zealand, or would the money be better used in Vanuatu? #cyclonepam

028fe9b5-f27c-4276-b1f3-7087c59d294c-620x372

The Volvo Ocean got postponed because of Cyclone Pam.

Vanuatu got devastated because of Cyclone Pam.

Team New Zealand wants $35 million to fund a yacht race for millionaires.

Does Team NZ really need that money or do the impoverished and homeless people of Vanuatu need it more.

I say we tell Team NZ that their state funded fun and games are over, we have more pressing need for the funds.

We don’t need a new flag, Northland doesn’t need new bridges and Team New Zealand can get stuffed.

Look at that, we just raised more than $100 million for Vanuatu with some sensible costs prioritisation. Read more »

Should Northland get new bridges…or should we give the money to help the people of Vanuatu? #cyclonepam

028fe9b5-f27c-4276-b1f3-7087c59d294c-620x372

Forget Northland, forget our so-called child poverty issue, and forget a referendum to change flag no one wants changed…the people of Vanuatu are in desperate need.

It is reported that National has promised to upgrade 10 one way bridges in Northland for between $32 million and $69 million

The National Party has promised to upgrade 10 one-way bridges in Northland as part of its byelection campaign which polls indicate will be a close-run race between National’s Mark Osborne and NZ First leader Winston Peters.

Mr Osborne and Transport Minister Simon Bridges announced the six-year programme to upgrade the bridges at Kaeo’s one-way bridge this morning.It is expected to cost between $32 million and $69 million.

Vanuatu has been smashed by Cyclone Pam, what little they did have is now spread all over the Pacific.

Cyclone Pam is one of the worst storms to have ever hit a populated area and the devastion will take years to recover.

Does Northland really need their one way bridges upgraded, or would those funds be better spent aiding our Pacific neighbours in their time of need?   Read more »

Should John Key get a new flag…or help the people of Vanuatu? #cyclonepam

028fe9b5-f27c-4276-b1f3-7087c59d294c-620x372

Forget Northland, forget our so-called child poverty issue, and forget a referendum to change flag no one wants changed…the people of Vanuatu are in desperate need.

It is reported that the flag referendum and subsequent change would cost something in the region of $35 million.

Vanuatu has been smashed by Cyclone Pam, what little they did have is now spread all over the Pacific.

Cyclone Pam is one of the worst storms to have ever hit a populated area and the devastation will take years to recover.

Does John Key really need a new flag, or would the money be better spent aiding our Pacific neighbours in their time of need?   Read more »

Quadcopter + Camera + Volcano